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Temporary Assistance for Needy Families
|U.S. Department of Health and
Administration for Children and Families
Office of Family Assistance
Washington, D.C. 20447
Date: August 28, 1997
STATE AGENCIES ADMINISTERING APPROVED PUBLIC
ASSISTANCE PLANS AND OTHER INTERESTED PARTIES
|SUBJECT:||Interpretation of "Federal Means-Tested Public Benefit"
|PURPOSE:||To inform you of the "Notice with comment period"
posted in the Federal Register on August 26, 1997 (62 FR 45256)
The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (PRWORA), P. L. 104-193, restricts the access of certain categories of immigrants to specified Federal benefits, including some benefits administered by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
Section 403 of PRWORA bars most qualified aliens who enter the U.S. on or after enactment (August 22, 1996) from eligibility for "Federal means-tested public benefits" for five years beginning on the date the individual entered the U.S. with a qualified alien status.
As defined in the Federal Register notice dated August 26, 1996 and effective immediately, HHS is interpreting "Federal means-tested public benefits" to include only those benefits provided under Federal means-tested, mandatory spending programs. The following HHS programs meet this definition: Medicaid and the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Block Grant the successor to the AFDC program.
In addition, 421 requires new sponsor-to alien deeming rules to be applied
to eligibility determinations under these same benefit programs if a sponsor
has signed a new, legally binding affidavit of support as provided for
under Section 423.
|GUIDANCE:||Program Grantees will be sent separate guidance on how to
implement the new deeming rules. The Department of Justice will be issuing
Interim Verification Guidance. Guidance on other immigration related issues
is still under consideration. Further information will provided as the issues
involving these complex provisions are resolved.
|INQUIRIES:||Inquiries should be addressed to the appropriate Administration for Children and Families Regional Administrator.|
Office of Family Assistance